I don’t like to read…

Last night during a twittersation, which I seem to be having lots of these days, a friend and I were discussing a topic and reached a  point where we disagreed about the source of our information.

Our disagreement reminded me of a couple of other conversations that I have had recently…

*** A friend posted that he needs to write more so he decided that he should read more.  I asked why he didn’t just write more but he said that some of his writer role models read more to improve their writing skills so he believes the same method would work for him.  For me, when I feel the need to write more, I find some inspiration and write.  It doesn’t always get published but allows my creative juices to flow.

*** Another friend and I were discussing my writing style and I jokingly told him that I considered myself a modern-day philosopher, after all I studied Philosophy in College and who really knows the qualifications to be philosopher anyway?  You think up some stuff, write it down and people either believe it or try to dispute it. (of course, it is a little more complex but you get my drift)

 

That's NOT me...

One of the things that you probably don’t know about me is that I don’t like to read.  When I was younger, I loved to read but once I started writing more, it seemed that I began to read less.  I like to have thoughts and formulate opinions based on interactions that I have virtually and in person.  I am not afraid to admit when I am wrong about a thought and love to engage with people to see different sides of issues.  On some level, I don’t like to read a lot because I don’t want to be like the guy in “Good Will Hunting” that Matt Damon calls out because he keeps citing his “opinions” which are really based on books that he has read.  I am sure at this point in our society, there is very little original thought but I don’t want to be one of those people who just regurgitates some one else’s ideas.

 

I also don’t rely heavily on statistics and studies because I realized in college that numbers can be construed to mean whatever you want them to mean.    If you are savvy, you can use the same numbers to prove and disprove the same theory… much of it is relative.  You can even study an issue for years and still be no closer to a solution than the person who walks in a room and actually speaks with people suffering from the issue and formulates their own opinion about how to solve the problem.

You can write white papers citing stats about this or than and still not be able to effect any change in a community or organization because nobody really gives a d*** about all that.  Most of the people I know aren’t polled or studied in any of these dissertations yet, in my opinion, we represent the average Americans that most public policies effect.  Much of what makes sense in theory does not work in actuality because theory often does not take emotion into account.  It’s like the corporate executives reading spreadsheets and creating policies that the workers scratch their heads wondering what they must be thinking thus the popularity of “Undercover Boss.”  Many CEO’s are going back to front lines to figure out what works and what doesn’t rather than paying for more studies.

When I write and speak, it is from my heart, it is from my experience, it is from the experiences of the people I know.  It may not be scientific but it’s real.  I don’t pretend to represent the views of everyone but I believe my network continues to grow and people interact with me because they resonate with my message.  The academics of the universe can probably poke a million holes in this post but guess what… I don’t care, this is MY blog and these are MY opinions. I encourage healthy debate because I hope it will teach me something. I like to think and to write and if it helps one person then I am happy 🙂

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2 thoughts on “I don’t like to read…

  1. Trudy says:

    I saw the conversation you had where studies and statistics were mentioned and though we have agreed on many things on Twitter, I agreed with the other person in this case. Some of the things you said were blanket generalizations that actual research has proven otherwise. In such cases it would be better to add a clarifier to the statement to prevent confusion. i.e.- “women I’ve spoken to are more consumer-driven when single” instead of the blanket statement about society benefitting off of single women when in fact married women have more access to capital and make family purchasing decisions more often. In my industry (photography) they make more than 90% of the choices. 

    The only flaw in your post is you are doing exactly what the researchers you kinda admonished are doing, except they have the more rigorous guidelines of the scientific method to follow. If you are basing what you say on a larger group of people than yourself and making inferences from that, you are in fact conducting research–just not academically. The researchers aren’t much different and to assume emotion (even subconsciously) doesn’t play a role in reaearch testing and findings is to not truly understand how a lot of research is conducted methinks. 

    I don’t think the Good Will Hunting is a good example because he was not just learning to “create” opinions. He was learning because a “need” to in order to feel better about being abused. It was protection or defense mechanism in his case. I don’t think anyone who considers knowledge greater than their own personal opinion is automatically like that film character. I think there can be a humilty not necessarily hubris in considering something outside of oneself’s frame of thought and reference. This is where reading and research are relevant. Without the research that many in fact disdain, we wouldn’t have many of the concepts that improve our lives or challenge us to even more complex thought. It doesn’t have to be an either/or world. There is room for both emotion and logic, both anecdotal and scientific research based thought and experience. 

    Another thing…I don’t think you and the people you know are representative of “average Americans” simply because your frame of thought is more emotional and anecdotal. Truth is that the average American doesn’t blog, doesn’t tweet, doesn’t have a college degree and isn’t in a professional network of any type where discussions like the ones you have occur. I think you’re in a different “sect” (if you will) of what some consider (whether positively or negatively) “elite,” maybe just not a part of the sect that is more logic and scientifically driven…perhaps.

    But yes, it is your blog and you should blog how you choose. I totally agree! Because I will surely write whatever the heck I want on my two major ones. Lol! 

    Good post…thought-provoking.    

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